Meet Stephanie Necessary

A plain manila envelope arrived at our office a couple of weeks ago from Stephanie Necessary, Creative Writing and Yearbook teacher to 6th, 7th and 8th graders at Forestbrook Middle School. After hearing about our “Women of Character” contest from Eileen Patonay, the school’s Career Development Facilitator, Stephanie asked all of her students to write an essay nominating a woman who had touched their lives. Stephanie says entering contests like ours gives her students a chance to be published and improve their writing. Her students have won regional, national and even international recognition. After reading the touching essays written by these young writers, we decided to pay a visit to the school.

Seventh grader, Mary Bordanaro nominated her ELA (English and Language Arts) teacher, Mary Massey, and wrote the following:

…Ms. Massey and I have one big thing in common. Both of us have had a parent that died. My dad died when I was nine years old and sometimes I just have a day where I just want to cry my eyes out. But, when that happens, Ms. Massey is there, and I can cry all I want and I know she’ll understand…she always makes me feel better, even when things don’t look so good…Ms. Massey is the best teacher, friend or any other thing a person could have…

Another seventh grader, Samantha Craig, wrote about her guidance counselor, Ashley Rhodes.

…One of the women who has helped me the most is Mrs. Rhodes…she has always been there for all the kids who have problems at home like [being] abused, parents fighting, etc…whenever I need someone just to cheer me up, she is the person to go to…I am soooo grateful for Mrs. Rhodes…

We are so grateful to Stephanie for submitting these wonderful essays and to the talented young writers who wrote them. This dedicated young teacher has been at Forestbrook Middle School for three years. When she’s not helping her class become better writers, Stephanie and her husband, Mark, a professional bass player with the Necessary Band, spend time with their two young sons, five year-old Miles and six year-old Harley. She is also a professional photographer.

Stephanie added her own submission to the stack, and her letter was so compelling we decided to introduce you to Stephanie’s nomination in this issue as well. Meet Candice Lively, a district attorney with the Horry County Solicitor’s office and a real “Woman of Character” on the following page.

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